If you haven’t heard about the term self-awareness, or you heard it vaguely one day somewhere, well, it is time to dig deeper into this concept today. At least that is my opinion after taking two years to learn about who I am.
Why is self-awareness critical?
It is essential to develop self-awareness for many reasons:
- Better decision making
- Better productivity
- More happiness
- More creativity
To name a few.
Whether you are a businesswoman, an athlete, an executive, understanding self-awareness will give you the tools to become a better person by understanding who you are so you can choose to live the life you truly want.
This post will define self-awareness and show a few examples of how it is used in personal growth today.
What is self-awareness?
One of the definitions is: “the ability to see yourself clearly and objectively through reflection and introspection.” Modern research goes a bit further, and Dr. Tasha Eurich has discovered two types of self-awareness: internal and external self-awareness.
There is indeed the inner work of learning more about our inner self, but we must understand how people see us too because we are social creatures.
Dr. Tasha Eurich and her team, working with 5000 persons, came up with these two parts of self-awareness:
“Internal Self-awareness: is about everything that happens within us, how we think about our passion, aspirations, our values. How do we fit in this world, and how do we impact others.
External self-awareness is about figuring out how people see us with our internal self-awareness.”
Self-awareness is the first step or an ongoing process to keep in touch with how we feel, who we are, and how we respond to our external environment.
Why is Self-awareness crucial?
Understanding ourselves equips us with a stack of resources that will help us be happier and have better choices to live the life we want.
Better decision making
Knowing who we are, our strengths, weaknesses, values, beliefs will help us make better decision making and ultimately more successful in the path we chose.
Ask yourself “what” questions instead of “why” questions when doing personal introspection. Saying “what can I do to feel better?” offers more options and a possible solution than “why do I feel crappy today?”.
As we are more aware and knowledgeable of our abilities, a whole new world of possibilities opens. It gives us more possible solutions to experiment with and solve our challenges in life.
If you understand your growth levels if you have more clarity about where you want to go and what you can do, wouldn’t you be more productive? I can tell you that you will have a better start than most of the population because you worked on self-awareness.
Writing in a journal helps us see if what we are doing is the right action or the right way of approaching it.
Understanding our values and what happens within us helps in building healthier relationships. We are less in “reaction mode” to other people’s words, feelings, and behaviors; we develop a “response mode” that helps us take a step back and be more objective and understanding.
Even though people think that their level of awareness is high, according to Dr. Eurich’s research on leaders and self-awareness, 10 to 15% fit the being aware criteria.
Life is a never-ending cycle of transformation. In life, there is always something new to learn. We are constantly changing year after year. Therefore, practicing self-awareness is a constant practice that ideally will be more helpful to do daily.
Modern research has shown that self-awareness is a combination of internal discovery and understanding of how the external world is aware of us.
Developing self-awareness brings us more happiness and makes us more efficient in our professional and personal life. And this is exactly what happened for me.